Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Good report from today's two-month check up. Edward is up to the 20th percentile in weight (pretty good considering he started in the 6th!) His official two-month weight is 10.5 lbs. This is lower than his ER weight from Saturday night, but there they weighed him in his clothes and, more significantly, his diaper, which can get quite heavy.

Also, he's still not up to his full pre-sickness eating habits so he probably hasn't gained his usual amount of weight the last few days. Each day he's had one or two episodes of spitting/throwing up so we've been limiting his intake by giving him his milk in a bottle. This means the whole feeding process takes longer for me since I have to pump milk after he eats to keep the supply going, but it's worth it to be able to ease him back up to full feeding. The doctor said this was expected after having a stomach virus because his digestive system needs time to recover. Sometimes when food hits it just isn't getting digested so then it comes back up later. He should be fine in another few days.

He had three shots at this appointment and I can report that he will not be eager for more. He really wailed and actually held his breath for what seemed like forever but was probably just a few seconds. After all this he slept most of the afternoon and I hope he'll sleep more tonight. He can have Tylenol if it seems like he needs it.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

On Friday I thought I was going to post an exuberant message about how Edward slept through the night for the first time--10 p.m. to 5:30 a.m. As the day wore on though, it became clear that any celebration was probably premature. It's more likely that he stored up on sleep as a way of fighting a little virus he picked up. He slept most of the morning as well, but by noon on Friday I was on the phone to the doctor to ask what to do about a two-month old who is throwing up.

The answer turned out to be replacing his breastmilk diet with an electrolyte solution until he could keep the clear liquid down. Half an ounce every half an hour at first and then gradually increasing as he tolerated it. I called John at work and asked him to go get the drink and come home. He made record time between the office and home with a stop at Walgreens in between to pick up a four-pack of Gerber LiquiLytes. I am so glad John worked so hard to get him to take a bottle. I'm not sure what we would have done if he didn't know how to drink this way. We measured out half an ounce using the syringe that was once Edward's main food delivery method and he sucked it right down. It came back shortly after that, but gradually he was able to tolerate this and we increased the dose through the evening to two ounces. A quick call back to the 24-hour nurse line led to the advice to let him sleep until he woke up on his own through the night. He ended up waking about every three hours for a little more LiquiLyte drink.

Saturday we thought he was tolerating that well enough to alternate between breastfeeding and LiquiLyte each time, but limit the breastfeeding to about 5 minutes so he wouldn't overwhelm his delicate tummy. Well, that sort of worked, but by evening he was retching again and I decided to call back for more nurse advice. When I got through she said that given his age and the fact that this had continued well past 24 hours we should take him to see the doctor. We don't have any Urgent Care sites here, so that meant a trip to the ER. Luckily it was only about 8:30 p.m. when we got there--well before the rowdy late-night college crowd trickles in with various injuries. It did not take long to see the doctor and once we did he listened to all we'd been doing, checked Edward from head to toe and determined that we just needed to continue with the LiquiLytes overnight and then if he tolerated that resume breastfeeding today. Kind of a lot of hassle just to be told to keep doing what you're doing, but it was reassuring. Edward did great through the waiting and the poking and prodding. Of course he was declared adorable by several new people.

Oh, he also got weighed, so on his two-month birthday and three days in advance of his official two-month checkup, which is on Tuesday, I can report that he weighed in 11 lbs. 5 oz. We knew those cheeks and chins must be adding up to something substantial!

So today he's still a little droopy and crabby, happiest when being held, which we are happy to oblige. He's eating pretty well. I might have overdone it at his last feed--need to remember to stop him at about 10-15 minutes. He's still not fully better, but definitely on the road to recovery.

I was surprised at how sad I was watching him be sick on Friday. Even when he was just sleeping, I could tell it was a "sick sleep" and I just felt so bad at not being able to wave a magic wand to make him feel better. It brought back a lot of the same emotion I felt watching Will in the hospital day after day and feeling helpless. On the other hand, since he obviously had to get sick at some point in his young life, I must admit I'm relieved it happened before I went back to work leaving him in day care. Thinking about polluting his little system with the germs of half a dozen other little kids just compounds the guilt. This way I've seen that even safe at home with me the little buggers can get through.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

As mentioned in the last post, Edward and I have not left the house much lately. We did manage an excursion to the grocery store today though and it led to a startling discovery--he has outgrown the penguin hat! Luckily a new hat arrived today in the mail, representing a second generation of cousin clothes-swapping. My cousin B in Seattle sent a whole box of stuff her son has outgrown, including this sweet dino-hat. My aunt used to send me boxes of B's clothes when we were kids, and I always thought her things were SO cool. Once there was a winter jacket with zip off sleeves so you could wear it as a vest or a jacket--wow! Well, it was the 80s after all.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

We're feeling a bit cabin feverish here in Iowa. Tuesday was magnificent--63 degrees and sunny. Edward and I took a long walk to get the remaining ingredients for our Valentine's dinner and then since he was still sleeping in the stroller when we got home I took off my sweatshirt (yes, it was THAT warm) and went to work untangling my Christmas lights from the bushes out front. It should be noted that these lights have not been lit since early January, but I always wait for a decent day to take them down. No sense standing out in the cold. This was way more than a decent day for light removal. I got all six strings off the two bushes and Edward was still sleeping, so I grabbed my book and sat on the stoop reading until he woke up to eat.

My back was a little sore that day, but I figured it was just a factor of too much sitting around and thought the walk would do me good. I guess it was more than just inactivity because Wednesday and Thursday I could hardly move. Severe tightness in my lower back made life pretty darn uncomfortable. Ibuprofen and heatwraps got me through, but just barely. So obviously we didn't go anywhere those two days. Thursday we also had a winter storm that brought little snow, but was followed by arctic air that froze the snow into something resembling white concrete. Friday and Saturday saw highs in the single digits. Now I know why they say Eskimos have 500 words for snow. I've never seen anything like this. I didn't actually experience it until Saturday, my first venture out of the house, when I went out to see if my car would start. It did and I ran it for a while to warm up so I could chip the "concrete snow" off.

Based on this experience I am happy to report that Lands End does not lie when it claims its Hooded Sport Squall Jacket will keep you warm even in -10 degree weather. I got this in November to replace a Lands End jacket with a broken zipper (what a great company--products guaranteed for life!) but didn't wear it until January (for obvious reasons!) and really hadn't tested it in true Iowa winter weather until yesterday. It took almost half an hour to clear off my car even after it had warmed for 15-20 minutes and I was not cold.

Edward, meanwhile, has been inside since Tuesday afternoon. I don't think he cares too much. He definitely likes being warm. Here's a cozy pre-bedtime image. He hasn't been sleeping in a hat for a few weeks now because we thought that might be contributing to some skin blemishes, but this weekend it was definitely cold enough for a sleeping cap.

In other exciting news, John hooked up our new computer this weekend. Our old one was chugging along at dial-up speed despite our high-speed connection. We were just asking for too much from a five-year-old machine. Installing iTunes last year about this time was the final nail in the coffin, but we pushed it through the summer and fall. Our plan was that the new computer would be our Christmas present for each other, but we got a much better present in Edward. His arrival moved computer shopping a little lower on the priority list. What a difference though--no more going to the kitchen to make a snack while waiting for a program to start up or for pictures to download.

Maybe that will lead to more pictures posted here, but no promises. This computer is great, but it does not have a feature that adds hours to the day!

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Our friends B & M welcomed their second child last week and we could not be happier for them. It will be great to have kids the same age...at least until they get to the "cootie" stage (their baby is a girl, their second daughter.) But it was funny that one of their first comments was "I forgot how much they sleep!" They are of course accustomed to the schedule of their two-and-a-half year old. Sometimes I still can't believe how much Edward sleeps, though I know it's contributing to his healthy growth. A couple of times recently he has gone slightly more than five hours overnight. The first time I woke in a panic thinking I'd missed his call. But no, he was still sleeping. Oh to have that consistently...or maybe even six or seven hours? Dare to dream!

This photo is from a Saturday nap. It was his first time in a pants outfit rather than a one-piece footie sleeper. We thought it was endlessly entertaining that his pants had to be pulled up "old man style" almost to his arm pits. When you don't have a waist it's tough to wear them any other way! You'll also note that despite the last post bemoaning his refusal of the pacifier, he's sucking away here. We found a pacifier of the same brand as the bottle and thought it was worth a try. He doesn't take it immediately, but sometimes if we hold it there for a bit and let him work it around with his tongue he'll take it and start sucking.

He also sleeps well in this carrier generously on loan from our friends J & S. S swears by the BabyBjorn, saying both their kids practically lived in it! It's very cozy and leaves my hands free while he sleeps all snug and close.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

We're finding that it takes a lot more time to meet the basic needs of three people rather than just two. John downloaded pictures from the camera last night and there were 40 new ones since our last download. Guess it had been awhile. We're not so far down the "crazy parents" track to think that posting all 40 would be appropriate, but here are a few to make up for lost time. They give an idea of what Edward has been up to in the last few weeks.

His first trip to see Grandma and Grandpa Kenyon in Des Moines was a success. We made it there and back with no major melt-downs--by any of us! The timing didn't quite work as we'd planned--travel seemed to make him hungrier than usual so he spent a lot of his time there eating. Not very sociable.

Last Wednesday he went with me to my six-week postpartum check-up where we learned that Dr. Kennedy is leaving general OB practice to head a specialized clinic at University Hospitals. We're trying to be happy for her, but it's hard to think about going to another doctor. I never understood why some people were willing to pay a much higher insurance premium in order to have unrestricted choice of doctors. Now I know about being attached to a doctor. Small consolation in knowing that she'll still be around and able to consult with whichever of her colleagues draws the short straw and winds up with my case.

That same day Ed met his Uncle PJ for the first time--fresh off the plane from Phoenix via Chicago. We even ordered up a 50-degree February day just so he wouldn't feel too much of a shock to the system.

Then on Friday Aunt Nora came back for her second check in. Edward has changed a lot since she last saw him the day after he was born. She noted "serious cheekage and chinage" in this photo.

No doubt that will continue to be the case as he learns to eat from a bottle. He did not take to it right away, but patience and perseverance on John's part have made this part of their daily routine.

When he can't get the bottle or "the real thing" he will often settle for a finger to suck on, though he consistently rejects the pacifier. Here he's decided that after Mom and Dad got to pig out at a Superbowl party he should be able to do the same and is waiting for me to get the hint.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

We have heard the complaints about the lack of new Edward pictures on the blog, but not until Edward himself staked out a position in front of the computer hoping a new photo of himself would magically appear did we realize something needed to be done. So, we hope to get some new pictures of Ed up soon. He's doing well, eating like crazy and sleeping like he should.